See below for our current plan, but here is a letter update from the session of Living Branch (as of July 25, 2020) on our plans for resuming worship & guidelines in light of the Covid-19 pandemic:
Hi Living Branch Families-
As most of you are aware, the State of Indiana released its Back on Track Plan months ago to guide our state through the process of relaxing social distancing. As a church, we are beginning to explore the changes that we will need to make once we return to public worship. Out of an abundance of caution and also a desire to worship in person with all who are comfortable doing so, we have attempted to honor government guidance and good health policy in our plans. There is a lot of information we would like to communicate to you, so we have decided to do so in a FAQ format.
When is Living Branch going to resume public worship like normal?
In addition to being in compliance with state guidelines, we also need to get clearance from Legacy Christian School to be back in the school building in full. We are in conversation with Legacy in order to determine when this can happen. We will let the church know as soon as we have a firm date for all normal activities (such as nursery).
What kind of precautions will be taken once we resume public worship?
- We will livestream the audio of our service on Facebook – We want to ensure that those who are unable to attend still have access to worship. Sermons will also be available through Apple, Google, and Spotify. Once we begin public worship, we will no longer produce the Sunday Morning Podcast that we have featured the past several weeks.
- Nursery and children’s wing will be completely closed – We will need to minimize our Sunday morning footprint and we will not have an open nursery or our children’s church ministry. We know this is an added burden for families with young children and we, as a church body, can help by being extra gracious with the children of our church. We will explore a location to set up a temporary diaper changing station and place for nursing mothers.
- The gym will be closed to all recreation – Again, needing to minimize our footprint, the gym will not be available to our children or for fellowship. It will be able to be accessed by the set up crew, those using the restrooms, or parents who need to attend to young children’s need.
- The Hospitality Station will be closed – We know that coffee and snacks are important, so feel free to bring your own!
- We will minimize the number of chairs set up, but maximize space in between chairs – We do anticipate smaller attendance and we will explore ways to maximize social distancing.
- We will alter the way we celebrate communion – We will be utilizing self contained juice and wafer cups that are factory pre-sealed. We will also alter the way we distribute the cups in order to minimize interaction.
- We encourage people to utilize non-contact greetings. While we will not require it, we do encourage people to wear masks if they feel led to do so.
- We will eliminate the morning offering – We want to encourage you to give online at www.livingbranch.net or through the Church Center App. We will not be able to accept any paper or coin currency. If you would like to give by check you can do so by mailing it to the church office at: 54 North 9th Street; Suite 240; Noblesville IN 46060.
- We will limit number of bulletins – We will e-mail PDFs of the bulletins on Saturday for people to print at home or to access on phones and tablets. A small number of bulletins will be printed.
- All chairs and surfaces in the cafeteria will be throughly cleaned each week.
What if I don’t feel comfortable resuming public worship or I am in a high-risk group?
Again, we want to encourage anyone who is not comfortable or in a high-risk category to utilize discretion on attending worship. We fully understand that all of us will have different views on how to relax social distancing. This is an area of Christian liberty. For those that choose to stay home, we encourage you to utilize our Facebook Live streaming option. Again, we strongly encourage anyone displaying COVID-like symptoms to stay home.
What happens if another outbreak of coronavirus hits after we have resumed public worship?
We fully realize that we cannot know what tomorrow holds in store for our community, and there is always the possibility that we will have to re-enter Stay at Home policy at some point. If that were to take place, we will notify the church and begin to again utilize our Sunday Morning Podcast as well as explore other avenues for online ministries.
What about other church activities like Community Groups and Youth Group?
Each Community Group has discretion for how and when they will meet. For Youth Group, Pastor Cody will be communicating to parents on plans for the Fall in sync with other leadership of the church.
Pastor Keith Doane, Teaching Elder
Bob Doane, Ruling Elder
Prayer & Practical Help
If you need any prayer or are aware of specific practical needs, please make sure to e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Pastor Keith or Pastor Cody will be glad to pass these requests along to our elders and acting mercy ministry as soon as possible. We encourage you to also lean on your community groups or join one if you don’t have one.
Sunday Morning Podcasts
As another option alongside in person corporate worship, we invite you to come back to our page on Facebook for the streaming of our weekly podcast at 10am on Sundays. This is not a replacement for church, but is a way for us to still be encouraged and fed by God’s Word, be led in song, and reminded of the truth about Jesus we celebrate each Sunday. You can also subscribe and listen to us on Apple, Google, and Spotify. Simply search for Living Branch Church and look for the green tree. Encourage your friends to tune in and follow our channels!
Newsletters and Social Media Updates
We will continue to update you on our status through our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as well as email any new developments in our meeting schedule, ministries or future events. If you have yet, visit our “Contact Us” page or fill out the “I’d like to receive your newsletter” form on our home page.
Resources for Family Worship
We are compiling guides to be distributed both for children during our podcasts as well as for leaders in the home to be extra intentional about your time in the Bible, prayer and song. Check back periodically for these resources.